Reuters writes "Northern Trust support shows money fund wrangle". The article says, "Oslo may seem far removed from Chicago, but the downgrade of a Norwegian lender's debt rating last fall led U.S.-based Northern Trust Corp to step in with $69.7 million of support for two of its money market funds. The unusual backstop -- shown in filings and which the Chicago trust bank acknowledged to Reuters -- has become a flashpoint in the debate over the future of the $2.5 trillion U.S. money fund industry. At a time when regulators are urging tighter rules for the funds, some specialists say the support shows how even developments in distant lands can affect fund companies.... Northern Trust executives would not comment on the policy debate, but sent a statement to Reuters describing the support as a routine decision after Moody's Investors Service downgraded the Norwegian lender, Eksportfinans, in November when it lost its role as sole operator of an export loan system. Eksportfinans notes were held by two money funds that Moody's would have downgraded as well, Northern Trust said, had it not bought the paper. Northern Trust said the notes paid off at par, meaning it did not suffer losses. Others say even though the notes paid off, the support shows how the fund sponsor took on some extra cost and risk."

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